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Poster: William Tell Date: Jan 23, 2007 4:25pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Fat Elvis or skinny Elvis--I mean Jerry

For a voice, without proper care and attention, the conclusions are obvious. It is one thing to say that we like this or we like that, but having followed this soul through from start to finish, one cannot conclude anything other than there was a loss...doesn't mean it's good or it's bad necessarily, but one must acknowledge the reality of the transition.

After 71 or so, live, Jerry just doesn't have it. One can debate, argue, etc., but listen, and it's there. No opinion about it. Strong words? No. Easily defensible. Tbis, I should hasten to add, has NOTHING, necessarily, to do with what we like or do not like.

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Poster: acetboy Date: Jan 23, 2007 10:26am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Fat Elvis or skinny Elvis--I mean Jerry

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This post was modified by acetboy on 2008-05-30 01:58:55

This post was modified by Diana Hamilton on 2007-01-23 18:26:17

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Poster: William Tell Date: Jan 23, 2007 4:59pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Fat Elvis or skinny Elvis--I mean Jerry

I understand the reaction. I was there. But, if you listen to the shows from prior to 71 and then those post, the vocals go down hill...doesn't mean you can't enjoy it, appreciate it, even prefer it, BUT it can be evaluated from a purely technical standpoint, as Jerry himself stated, and that is that...harsh, upsetting, but not really difficult to defend. Again, has nothing to do with what we like or dislike.

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Poster: high flow Date: Jan 23, 2007 5:10pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Fat Elvis or skinny Elvis--I mean Jerry

"BUT it can be evaluated from a purely technical standpoint..."

I disagree. It's art.

As I see it, Jerry was born to sing bluegrass and in 1991 his bluegrass voice was at it's peak.

His lilting renditions of the old shantys give me goose-bumps. Goose-bumps from his voice, not his guitar. With GD, it's always his playing that grabs me, not so much the singing. You know, the GD sound was so big, the boys were always maxed-out vocally. Like NY shows where they ALWAYS had to shout the lyrics. No room for quiet parts, so Dew was the perfect NYC ballad, not Stella. But I digress.

Point is, it's music and we don't all hear it the same way.

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Poster: William Tell Date: Jan 23, 2007 5:26pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Fat Elvis or skinny Elvis--I mean Jerry

I stand corrected. You are right to clarify that, HF. Thanks. Just a bit cranky tonight, folks...

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Poster: high flow Date: Jan 23, 2007 5:32pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Fat Elvis or skinny Elvis--I mean Jerry

Will - That's why GD makes for such good debate. Most of these topics/arguments have no real right or wrong solutions. The way GD approached each show keeps anybody from being absolute about any GD related topic. Does that make sense?

You cannot be wrong and I cannot be right, but we can both be enlightened. What matters is, I care what you think and I am willing explore the possibilty of seeing the same way.

HF

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Poster: ghostofpig Date: Jan 23, 2007 5:42pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Fat Elvis or skinny Elvis--I mean Jerry

In terms of aging, I'm not talking about physical changes in writers. What Hembo and Jerry have in common with many artists is that they were young lions once. Anything was possible--there was nothing to live up to, no high bar to jump over. They could aim for the stars and so what if they missed? The great ones didn't miss.

But young lions who become too successful are their own toughest act to follow. And it must be very hard to keep up that energy night after night, especially when the audience is soooooo huge and the stage is so wide.

Yeah, getting old and suffering from carpal tunnel and lung issues and diabetes and drug abuse don't help much either.
The fact that the Dead--and Jerry--kept going that long is a testament to something that is more profound than any concert or song or era. With the Dead, the sum was always greater than the parts, but as the parts started to wear over time, the sum--IN MY OPINION--diminished. That's not unusual.

Hell, go listen to the Stones--it's sad to hear Mick's voice getting more and more tired. Sad and horrible.

Like a great boxer--like Ali--there is a time to quit before you are merely going through the motions. Even Jerry admitted that he often felt this way. Decay is inevitable.
When it sets in, you have to accommodate it, adjust to it; and the Dead did just that. That they weren't IN MY OPINION as powerful isn't as important as the fact the they WERE.
I don't think they became a circus act--despite some of the really off nights--but they did become, in part, a nostalgia act.

A lot of younger folks never got the chance to see them at such venues as the Fillmore with Pig and T.C. and Mickey. The intimacy of those days--the fire and youth--cannot be replicated.

Still--I am glad they stayed around, glad so many people younger than I am got to see them, got to experience the aura, got to get a taste. A friend of mine said, when Jerry died, that he had seen them the previous year. And he was very glad he did.

Indeedee.

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Poster: William Tell Date: Jan 23, 2007 6:11pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Fat Elvis or skinny Elvis--I mean Jerry

Agreed; thanks for putting it better.

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Poster: acetboy Date: Jan 23, 2007 10:26am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Fat Elvis or skinny Elvis--I mean Jerry

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This post was modified by acetboy on 2008-05-30 01:58:24

This post was modified by Diana Hamilton on 2007-01-23 18:26:28

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Poster: William Tell Date: Jan 23, 2007 5:18pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Fat Elvis or skinny Elvis--I mean Jerry

You're right about that...and given that, I was wrong to come on so strong. But, just kicking it around so we can better understand our own obsessions.

Thanks for listening/reading, my friend.